Workplace Wellness at GHF

Be Well at Work: Workplace Wellness and Motivation

Investing in workplace wellness has been a hot topic with the rapid adoption of programs among established companies. With such fast and widespread adoption, many people and companies have called into question the effectiveness and financial practicality of these programs.

In a January 2016 article published in the Society for Human Resource Management, Stephen Miller cites research looking at the 45 companies posting top scores on the HERO scorecard for workplace wellness practices. The stock prices of these companies rose an average of 235 percent from 2009 to 2014, as compared to an average of 159 percent among the companies listed in the S&P 500 in that time frame. Paul Terry, CEO of HERO, and Ray Fabius, study co-author and co-founder of HealthNEXT, believe that these findings support that maintaining healthier employees results in higher productivity and performance while increasing a sense of engagement in their work and leading to lower turnover rates (1).

Motivation Strategies for Workplace Wellness

What does effective workplace wellness look like? Research from the University of Pennsylvania demonstrates that using negative punishment is as much as 50 percent more effective than positive reinforcement. In a 13 week study of 281 employees with a daily step goal of seven thousand, participants were either given $1.40 for every day they met their goal or they were given the full $42 reward at the beginning of each month and had to return $1.40 for every day they missed their step goal (2).

While loss-aversion works in the short-term, it’s worth asking if the tradeoff to resentment from employees. Especially since other methods work well, such as developing intrinsic motivation through rewarding efforts rather than outcomes, and developing a sense of social belonging while tying the process to something meaningful to the employees. Self-Determination Theory, a seminal work in motivation dives much deeper into the importance of intrinsic motivation and internalized extrinsic motivation (3).

Active Design for Workplace Wellness

Active Design for Workplace Wellness

Active design is another strategy that has had success by designing or simply re-arranging the workspace to encourage movement. This includes having signage to direct employees to the stairs and encouraging employees to choose the stairs over the elevator. Additionally, making natural light more available, encouraging face-to-face communications and offering either a variety of height work surfaces can all make improvements in employee health and productivity. These all help without needing complicated incentive structures that may lead to lower long-term motivation (2).

In summary, research has shown that among companies who have successful workplace wellness programs, the financial returns and competitive advantage are clear. However, there are questions as to what methods to adopt. It is crucial to consider how it will integrate into the company culture, what resources are available for incentive programs, or in developing an environment conducive to health, well-being, and productivity. Our Golden Home Fitness coaches streamline your workplace wellness services by coming right to you on-site; call (844) 704-9477 for a free coaching session!



4 Reasons to Invest in Employee Fitness

In our popular podcast clip: “You Can Get Fit Anywhere,” we discussed how it’s not the gym that makes you fit, it’s doing the work wherever and whenever you can. Americans are busy, on average are spending 8 hours and 46 minutes at work and doing work related activities (1). With family, social activities, eating and sleeping, it’s understandable why people feel they don’t have time for wellness and taking care of their own health. Thankfully, programs for wellness in the workplace have been growing rapidly and are a viable solution. Here are four (with a bonus fifth) reasons to invest in employee fitness:

1. Healthy Employees Stay with Your Company (40% More!)

Research from Towers Watson and the National Business Group on Health showed that organizations with a highly effective wellness program lowered voluntary attrition on average from 15% to 9% (2).

2. Health Care Cost Savings of 6 Times Investment

In a six month study completed with a random sample of 185 employees, 57% of high risk employees were converted to low risk, claim costs were reduced by $1,421 per person, and the control group showed no improvements. For every dollar invested in the program, $6 were saved on health care (2).

3. Develop a Company Culture of Health and Wellness

By establishing a company culture of investing in health, individual wellness improves throughout the company, slashing costly absenteeism and productivity loss (3).

4. Personal Training Gets Results

Working with a Personal Trainer has been shown to yield better results, provide more appropriate workouts, and improve client mindset towards fitness training (4, 5, 6).

5. Bonus! 32% Better Stock Performance than the S&P 500

The top 45 performers on the HERO health and wellness scorecard grew their stock prices 235% on average, compared to 159% for the S&P 500 from 2009 to 2014 (7).


At Golden Home Fitness, we exist to empower people to live longer, fuller lives no matter their age, and have programs to help you, your company, and your employees live well and move better. To discuss how we can help you specifically, call 844-704-9477 or email to take the first step to helping your company grow stronger!

Accompanying Infographic (Click to Expand)


Additional Resources Referenced:

  1. “How Americans Spend Their Time.” U.S. Department of Labor
  2. Berry et. al – “What’s the Hard Return on Employee Wellness Programs?”’s_the_Hard_Return_on_Employee_Wellness_Programs
  3. De La Torre and Goetzel – “How to Design a Corporate Wellness Plan That Actually Works”
  4. Storer et al. – “Effect of supervised, periodized exercise training vs. self-directed training on lean body mass and other fitness variables in health club members.” – Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research: July 2014 – Volume 28 – Issue 7 – p 1995–2006
  5. McClaran – “The Effectiveness Of Personal Training On Changing Attitudes Towards Physical Activity” – Journal of Sports Science and Medicine (2003) 2, 10-14
  6. Dias et al. – “Influence Of A Personal Trainer On Self-selected Loading During Resistance Exercise” – J Strength Cond Res. 2017 Jul;31(7):1925-1930.
  7. Miller – “Workplace Wellness Linked with Superior Corporate Performance”